Is Air Conditioner (A/C) allowed to be used? What was the technique used back in old times to beat the heat?
Answer by Dr JV Hebbar:
Ancient methods of air conditioning, as explained by Master Vagbhata:
Ashtanga Hrudayam, Sutrasthana, 3rd chapter:
a. Day time should be spent in forests having tall trees which seem to touch the sky, such as shala (Shorea robusta), Tala (Borassus flabellifera) etc., which obstruct the hot rays of the sun.
b. One should reside in houses around which creepers of grapes and aromatic flowers are spread. These help to block the sunrays.
c. Sheets of cloth dribbling with sweet scented water are arranged all around.
d. The person should sleep on a soft bed prepared with banana leaf, kalhara (soughandika – a water plant), leaves of lotus, water lily etc., which are naturally coolant plants. The same flowers, fully blossomed flowers, should be placed allover.
Spend the day remaining inside the house cooled by water fountains, water being scented with Ushira (Cus Cus grass), and thereby relieving oneself from the heat of the sun.
At night, one should sleep on the terrace, under the moonlight. Exhaustion due to heat of the day is relieved by –
Anointing the body with moist paste of sandalwood,
Wearing garlands, wearing of very light and thin dresses, fanning with fans made of Tala vrinta – ornamental fans made of peacock feathers, or large leaves of lily made wet,
Cool breeze sprinkling water droplets, Garlands of flowers of camphor, jasmine and of pearls and beads of sandalwood are recommended.
Side effects of air conditioners
Constant use of a/c causes Vata and Kapha related problems as below:
Vata problems: Fatigue, dry skin, feeling sick, worsening of bodyache, fever.
Kapha problems: Worsening of cold, running nose, joint stiffness
Vata and kapha problems: Worsening of cough cold, breathing problems, spread of viruses such as Covid 19, due to lack of efficient air circulation
It also comes with some advantages: Cleaner air due to filters, mosquito repellant noise, etc.
For Pitta body type persons, a/c can be life saving. Some Pitta people start fainting as soon as the atmospheric temperature raises above 30 degree Celsius.
A/c is useful for people with high Pitta disorders such as chronic skin diseases with burning sensation, bleeding disorders, etc.
We should use it only when the pros overtake cons.
AC Car Travel Discomfort, Motion Sickness
By Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD (Ayu), PhD
One in five have one or other kind of discomfort while travelling in Air Conditioned vehicles. It can be avoided in few of the cases like personal cars or vehicles and if the season also in favor of it. But in other cases it is unavoidable. Even as a matter of joy, pleasure and prestige some prefer to have AC irrespective of the need and necessity. Later such people end up with few discomforts. Truly such discomforts may vary from mild to moderate condition like nausea, gastric irritation to the extent of fever, breathlessness, vertigo, darkness, hallucination etc.
Here are few simple remedies to overcome such discomforts. According to ones particular kind of discomfort the suitable remedy can be chosen and tried.
1.Nausea,Vomiting sensation,Regurgitation etc
One spoon each of salt and cumin seeds (Jeera) are taken together and fine powder is made. During the time of journey, a pinch of this is taken and chewed or swallowed. This can be repeated 4-5 times during the time of travel
Bloating, Gastric irritation, Gurgling of stomach, Pricking sensation etc
Sliced dry ginger or ginger powder is soaked in lemon juice and dried completely. After 15-20 minutes of journey in the AC vehicles, 1-2 pinch of the above combination is taken along with warm water. If necessary 2-3 times this can be repeated.
Giddiness, Hallucination, Vertigo, Darkness of the eyes etc
1 spoon of tea powder, half spoon of table salt and a pinch of pepper powder are taken together and fine mixture is made. This is preserved in air tight containers.
As the individual gets pre-manifestation feature (premonitory symptoms), one pinch (1/4 spoon) of this powder is added to half cup of warm water (that is taken in a flask) and dissolved. This is used for mouth gargling. Or else 2-3 teaspoon of this hot infusion can be taken internally.
This gives significant benefit by contributing stimulating effect.
Shivering, Cold, Sneezing, Cough, Dryness of the mouth or lips etc
Often the camphor added Eucalyptus oil is smelled/inhaled in case of sneezing, cold, shivering etc. Chewing or mastication of dry grapes (raisins) along with sugar will help to reduce cough, dryness etc in significant manner.
Cramps, Body ache, Joint pain, Stiffness after or during journey etc
Coverage of the cold sensitive body parts like ear, nose, smaller joints with thick cloth,jacket or blanket will surely safe guard the individual from such possible adversities of AC. Intake of 15-20 ml of Dashamoolarishtha or Jeerakarishtha helps in significant manner to relieve the stiffness and pain caused during or due to journey through AC vehicles.
Yes., simple remedies do wonder. You will be free from adverse reactions of the modern medicines and you will enjoy comfortable journey and there after too.
Consult Dr MS Krishnamurthy MD (Ayu), PhD